Image of Frankie Faison

Frankie Faison

Frankie Russel Faison, often credited as Frankie R. Faison, is an American actor known for his role as Deputy Commissioner Ervin Burrell in HBO's TV series The Wire  and as Barney Matthews in the Hannibal Lecter franchise. Faison was born in Newport News, Virginia, the son of Carmena (née Gantt) and Edgar Faison. He studied drama at Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington, Illinois, where he joined Theta Chi Fraternity. He also attended NYU's Graduate Acting Program, graduating in 1974. Faison started his acting career in 1974 in the New York Shakespeare Festival production of King Lear, with James Earl Jones in the title role. Faison's next role came in TV, in the short-lived series Hot Hero Sandwich in 1979. Faison did make it to the big screen in 1980, when he appeared in Permanent Vacation as "Man in Lobby". A string of small roles followed until 1986, when he played the part of Lt. Fisk in Manhunter. Also that year, he appeared in the comedy The Money Pit, as an unruly construction worker, and in the Stephen King film Maximum Overdrive. In 1988, he starred alongside Eddie Murphy and James Earl Jones in Coming to America in the role of a landlord and won a minor role in the 1989 Spike Lee film Do the Right Thing. Faison is notable for being the most frequent actor to appear in adaptations of Thomas Harris' Hannibal books: along with Manhunter, he also appeared as Lector's jailer Barney in The Silence of the Lambs, the sequel Hannibal and the prequel Red Dragon. During the 1990–1991 season, he starred in the Fox situation comedy, True Colors, with Stephanie Faracy and Nancy Walker, about an interracial couple. He was replaced byCleavon Little for the second season of the program. In 1991, Faison again appeared alongside Hopkins in the film Freejack, which also starred Mick Jagger and Maximum Overdrive co-star Emilio Estevez. In 1998, he was a regular on the science-fiction TV show Prey. In the 2003 film Gods and Generals, Faison played the role of Jim Lewis, a freed-slave, who shares his religious faith and optimism with CSA General Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson as the General's personal cook. In 2004, he starred as JoJo Anderson in The Cookout. Faison had a starring role as the Baltimore City Police Commissioner Ervin Burrell on the HBO drama The Wire. Faison appeared in Tyler Perry's Meet The Browns, a movie about a single mom who takes her family to Georgia for the funeral of her father—a man she never met. There, her clan is introduced to the crass, fun-loving Brown family. Faison played the role of Brown and Vera's brother, L.B. Brown. In 2009, he was also among the ensemble cast of John Krasinski's adaptation of Brief Interviews With Hideous Men playing the son of a toilet attendant who caustically recounts his father's experiences in one of the titular monologues. Faison played Richard Evans on One Life to Live from 2009 through 2012. He has recently appeared in episodes of Blue Bloods, which also stars Tom Selleck, as an assistant police commissioner. His main film role in this period was as Harlan in the filmAdam. He also appeared in the November 29, 2010 episode of Lie to Me. He has also appeared in White Chicks. Faison played the role of Sugar Bates, a prizefighter turned tavernkeeper, on the Cinemax program Banshee. He will next appear in the Netflix series Luke Cage.

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Jun 10, 1949 In Newport News, Virginia, USA
Movie/TV Credits:
First Appeared:
In the movie Permanent Vacation 1980-01-01
Latest Project:
Movie I'm Your Woman 2020-08-21
Known For
Poster of Elementary
Poster of Blue Bloods
Poster of Oz
Movie I'm Your Woman 2020-08-21
Movie The Grudge William Matheson 2020-01-02
Series The Village Ron Davis 2019-03-19
Movie An Actor Prepares Deacon Frank Dodge 2018-08-31
Movie The Sounding Roland 2017-03-10
Movie The Case for Christ Joe Dubois 2017-04-07
Movie An American Girl Story - Melody 1963: Love Has to Win Frank Ellison 2016-10-21
Movie Away From Here Carl 2014-05-17
Series Forever Pepper Evans 2014-09-22
Movie Trouble & the Shadowy Deathblow 2014-06-20
Series Banshee Sugar Bates 2013-01-11
Movie Tio Papi Gilly 2013-09-06
Series Banshee: Origins Sugar Bates 2013-01-22
Movie Cowgirls n' Angels Augustus 2012-05-25
Series Elementary Judge Brewster O'Hare 2012-09-27
Movie Mayor Cupcake Lenny Davis 2011-07-19
Series Blue Bloods Jeffords 2010-09-24
Movie Adam Harlan 2009-07-07
Series The Good Wife Pastor Jeremiah Easton 2009-09-22
Movie Do the Right Thing: 20 Years Later 2009-06-30
Movie Brief Interviews with Hideous Men Subject #42 2009-01-19
Movie For Sale By Owner Gene Woodman 2009-10-27
Movie Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant Rhamus Twobellies 2009-10-23
Movie Breaking Point Richter Green 2009-12-04
Movie Splinterheads Pope 2009-11-06
Movie Meet the Browns L.B. 2008-03-21
Movie Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist Janitor 2008-10-03
Movie My Blueberry Nights Travis 2007-11-28
Movie Premium Phil 2006-01-02
Series Black in the 80s 2005-02-01
Series Grey's Anatomy Unknown 2005-03-27
Movie America Brown Coach Bryant 2005-10-28
Series The Jury Unknown 2004-06-08
Movie Highwaymen Will Macklin 2004-02-13
Movie White Chicks Elliott Gordon 2004-06-23
Movie Messengers Tom Mabry 2004-06-27
Movie In Good Company Corwin 2004-12-29
Movie The Cookout Jojo Andersen 2004-09-03
Movie Gods and Generals Jim Lewis 2003-02-21
Movie A Little Inside Tom Donner 2002-02-17
Movie Showtime Lt. Winship 2002-03-14
Series The Wire Ervin Burrell 2002-06-02
Movie Red Dragon Barney Matthews 2002-09-29
Movie The Sleepy Time Gal Jimmy Dupree 2001-01-24
Movie Hannibal Barney Matthews 2001-02-08
Movie Down to Earth Whitney Daniels 2001-02-16
Movie Call Me Claus Dwayne 2001-12-03
Movie The Thomas Crown Affair Detective Paretti 1999-08-06
Movie Oxygen Phil Kline 1999-11-12
Series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Unknown 1999-09-20
Series Prey 1998-01-15
Movie Jaded Henry Broker 1998-07-09
Series Oz Cornelius Keane 1997-07-12
Movie Julian Po Sheriff Leon 1997-09-05
Movie The Stupids The Lloyd 1996-08-08
Movie Albino Alligator Agent Marv Rose 1996-09-09
Movie The Rich Man's Wife Detective Ron Lewis 1996-09-13
Movie Mother Night Robert Sterling Wilson 1996-11-01
Series The Langoliers Don Gaffney 1995-05-14
Series New York Undercover Unknown 1994-09-08
Movie The Spider and the Fly Lt. Turner 1994-01-18
Movie Sommersby Joseph 1993-02-05
Movie Money for Nothing Madigan 1993-09-10
Movie Freejack Eagle Man 1992-01-17
Movie The Silence of the Lambs Barney Matthews 1991-02-01
Movie City of Hope Levonne 1991-10-11
Series True Colors 1990-09-02
Series Law & Order Unknown 1990-09-13
Movie Do the Right Thing Coconut Sid 1989-06-14
Movie Coming to America Landlord 1988-06-29
Movie Mississippi Burning Eulogist 1988-12-08
Series Monsters Unknown 1988-10-01
Movie The Money Pit James 1986-03-15
Movie Manhunter Lt. Fisk 1986-08-14
Movie Maximum Overdrive Handy 1986-07-25
Series The Equalizer Unknown 1985-09-18
Movie C.H.U.D. Sgt. Parker 1984-08-31
Series Kate & Allie Unknown 1984-03-19
Movie Exterminator 2 Be Gee 1984-09-14
Movie Cat People Det. Brandt 1982-04-02
Movie Hanky Panky Cop Driver 1982-06-04
Movie Ragtime Gang Member 1 1981-11-20
Movie Permanent Vacation Man in Lobby 1980-01-01